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David Rounce (2023)

Home 9 About 9 Awards 9 The Firn Award 9 David Rounce (2023)

David Rounce

Dr Rounce has emerged as a leader in the glaciological community with multi-faceted skills that include numerical modeling, field work, remote sensing and data analysis applied to glacier change and associated hazards at all scales.

Dr Rounce’s initial work focussed on debris-covered glaciers in the Himalayas, with a particular emphasis on modelling energy exchanges between the ice and atmosphere through the supraglacial debris layer. He used this approach to develop a novel inversion of glacier surface temperature to derive spatially distributed maps of supraglacial debris thickness for the Everest region of Nepal, paving the way for systematically capturing the insulating properties of a debris layer in glacier mass-balance models.  This approach was scaled to derive the first distributed debris-thickness map of all glaciers in the world outside the ice sheets.

Dr Rounce’s most significant contribution to glaciology to date, however, is his work developing models of glacier evolution on a global scale. Dr Rounce developed a new physics-based global glacier evolution model (PyGEM), and importantly made this model open access with the aim of it becoming a community resource. Dr Rounce used this model to produce the most comprehensive projections of global glacier mass changes under plausible climate-change scenarios.

In addition to his outstanding science contributions, D. Rounce is deeply dedicated to international professional service, outreach activities, public engagement and mentoring. He is a Scientific Editor for Journal of Glaciology, has served as a guest editor for two other journals, including the Annals of Glaciology, and contributes to several international working groups, including the Randolph Glacier Inventory and the global Glacier Model Intercomparison Project (GlacierMIP).

He has also taken on leadership roles within the international community, including  as co-chair of the International Association of Cryospheric Sciences (IACS) Working Group on Debris-Covered Glaciers.

Dr Rounce has demonstrated a strong commitment to advising and mentoring, including building networks to provide opportunities for the students he supports.  Dr Rounce  has emerged as a scientific leader in the glaciological community, whose research and service exhibit the IGS core values of respect, integrity, inclusivity, innovation and collaboration

On behalf of the Awards Committee of the International Glaciological Society
Jeremy Bassis, Chair.